Friday, May 1, 2009
An Interview with Rachel Cohn
1. What was it like working with another author, in order to write books?
It's ridiculously fun, so much so that when I go back to write my solo
books, I have to remember all over again how much work writing is. It's
fun because when I send a chapter to David, I have no idea what he will
send back, so I can only plan so much; I have to figure my characters out
each time he volleys back, and in new and cool ways I hadn't expected.
2. How do you feel about being an idol to teens?
I'm an idol to teens? I really shouldn't be. Some days I don't make it
out of my pajamas. My primary food group is chocolate. Obviously, I'm no
role model. Unless wearing your pajamas and eating chocolate all day is
your lifestyle of choice, in which case, I say, feel free to worship me as
a false prophet.
3. Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
My advice is pretty boring. Read as much as you can, and when you sit
down to write -- well, write. Turn off the Internet and your iPod and
your phone -- set aside a dedicated time without distractions and go forth
and create. Have fun with it. Love your characters -- it will show.
4. Your books have become wildly popular. Is their any crazy fan stories?
Nothing too crazy, but I've had readers come to my book events dressed as
characters from my books, or they'll have come from a ridiculously far
distance to meet me, which is so gratyifying as an author, to see that
something you've written could have affected a reader so personally that
they'd go to such lengths to meet you.
5. Who are some of your favorite young adult authors?
There are so many! But, and this is a very annotated list, I can never
recommend enough any and all books by David Levithan (obviously), Patricia
McCormick, Jaclyn Moriarty, Megan McCafferty, Markus Zusak, Melina
Marchetta, Libba Bray...
6.Is there a special place where you do all of your writing?
Typically I go to a place in the Village in NYC called The Writers Room.
It's a loft-type space with cubicles and I have a laptop I store in a
locker there. It's very quiet and seems to be the place I can focus the
most. And sometimes I go to the library at Columbia University, which is
closer to where I live. Like I said, I'm a big believer in going to quiet
places without distractions to get serious writing done.
7. Your books range drastically in topics, do you mean to write them this way? If so, why?
I don't decide these things in advance. It's a matter of a character's
voice talking to me, almost like they're dictating to me. I feel like I
actually don't decide the topics; they do. I'm just the typist.
8. How many more books do you plan on writing?
I have no idea! I'll keep writing 'em so long as folks keep reading 'em.
9. If you could co-write a book with any author, which author would you
There are other co-authors besides David?
I would like to thank Rachel Cohn for agreeing to do this interview.
Posted by Zoe at 5:26 PM